The horses were "visibly underweight, full of intestinal parasites, and [showed] signs of long term neglect," according to the Humane Society.
Houston Police and Precinct 5 deputies seized the animals Wednesday from the 1000 block of Glen Ave.
Two people were arrested at the location. Jeffrey Murphy, 60, was charged with possession of a controlled substance. Robert Herman Smith, 43, was arrested on a warrant for for burglary.
Investigators say the animals did not have access to adequate food or water.
Each of the horses, aged three to more than 20 years, was grossly underweight.
"This is months, if not years of neglect. For these animals, this doesn't happen overnight. To know how horrible it's been for them, is heartbreaking," Schmidt said.
"I really think, by stepping in, we saved their lives," Schmidt said. "They were stuck in a very small enclosure, especially too small for eight horses, that was complete mud, muck and manure. And that wet substance was all the way up over their hooves where it was hard for them to even walk."
Authorities are working to get permanent custody of the horses. Any criminal abuse or neglect charges would come after that.
(Daily Mail - Dec 30, 2016)